EDP announces counseling service

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Aspiring entrepreneurs in Craig will soon have another resource to use before launching small businesses.

The Craig/Moffat County Economic Development Part--nership announced Wednesday a collaboration with SCORE, a free national small business counseling service and a resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

SCORE services will be available to local entrepreneurs in February.

"One of the best things they do is help people who are thinking about starting a small business," EDP board chairman Scott Cook said. "People can learn from (the counselors') own experience rather than their own expense."

He added, "I think it's going to help a lot of people. A lot of people don't really know who to talk to that they feel has knowledge and can help them."

SCORE, a non-profit, charitable organization, has about 11,500 volunteer business mentors in roughly 400 offices across the country. SCORE services include counseling on financing options, start-up strategies, marketing tactics, product development, cash flow and management.

Scott L. Ford, a retired counselor from the Small Business Resource Center in Steamboat Springs, will be Craig's SCORE volunteer.

"I think individuals wanting to start their own business and/or learn how to operate their business smarter are one of the most valuable economic development assets a community can have," Ford said.

EDP executive director Tim Gibbs said the program would benefit the local business community.

"I have seen SCORE in action and I look forward to making this valuable resource available locally," he said.

The counseling service is confidential. SCORE, in cooperation with the EDP and with assistance from Colorado Northwestern Community College, also plans to offer workshops and seminars to prospective business owners.

To schedule an appointment with a SCORE counselor or learn more about the program, call EDP executive director Tim Gibbs at 826-2039.

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